Low-dose versus high-dose immunoglobulin for primary treatment of acute immune thrombocytopenic purpura in children: results of a prospective, randomized single-center trial

J Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2003 Oct;25(10):797-800. doi: 10.1097/00043426-200310000-00011.


Purpose: To investigate the efficacy and side effects of two different intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) dose regimens for the initial treatment of childhood acute immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP).

Methods: Thirty-four consecutive patients with a clinical diagnosis of acute ITP and a platelet count below 20x10(9)/L were randomized to receive either 1 g/kg body weight (n=17; group A) or 0.3 g/kg body weight (n=17; group B) IVIG per day for 2 consecutive days (total dose 2 g/kg and 0.6 g/kg).

Results: Fifteen of the 17 patients (88.2%) in group A and 13 of the 17 patients (76.5%) in group B achieved a platelet count of more than 20x10(9)/L within 72 hours. The increase in platelet counts on day 2 and 3 was more pronounced in the high-dose group. Two patients in the high-dose group and four in the low-dose group were non-responders. Chronic disease occurred in three patients receiving 2 g/kg IVIG and in five patients receiving 0.6 g/kg IVIG. Side effects of IVIG administration were more common in the high-dose group.

Conclusions: The present study showed that platelet counts increased more rapidly after high-dose IVIG administration within the first 72 hours, although a platelet count of more than 20x10(9)/L can be achieved also with low-dose IVIG in most children with acute ITP. For patients with very low platelet counts, doses higher than 0.6 g/kg seem, therefore, to be more effective.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adolescent
  • Blood Platelets / cytology
  • Blood Platelets / drug effects
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Chronic Disease
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous / administration & dosage*
  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous / adverse effects
  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous / therapeutic use*
  • Immunotherapy*
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Platelet Count
  • Purpura, Thrombocytopenic, Idiopathic / drug therapy*
  • Purpura, Thrombocytopenic, Idiopathic / immunology*
  • Purpura, Thrombocytopenic, Idiopathic / pathology
  • Random Allocation
  • Recurrence


  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous